Alain Robert, the Frenchman dubbed the “French Spiderman” by the mainstream press and commonly referred to as a “climber” within the outdoor community, was arrested last Thursday after free soloing London’s Heron Tower.
Robert became famous over the years for similar high-profile urban ascents, including the presumed first ascents of some of the world’s tallest buildings such as the Burj Khalifa, in the United Arab Emirates and New York’s Empire State building.
Karen Baxter of the City of London Police threw some shade on Robert’s big day, telling the Independent that the stunt:
“…has had a considerable impact on police, other emergency services and the local community. Our officers, the London Fire Brigade and the London Ambulance Service all attended this incident taking them away from genuine emergencies.”
The same article also suggests Robert only settled on the Heron Building after evaluating several other iconic high-points that make up the London skyline.
“It is believed he only decided which building he was going to tackle after assessing the Walkie Talkie and the Cheese Grater earlier this week,” said the article, referring to the popular names of high rises located at 20 Fenchurch Street and 122 Leadenhall Street, respectively.
It remains to be seen how many iconic FA’s Robert has left under his harness, as the climber is getting up there in more ways than one. At 59, the human spider has experienced a number of accidents to his record.
He had remarked to press before his latest climb, “I fully feel alive when my life is at stake.”
That said, and Unofficially speaking, FREE ALAIN ROBERT!